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Gossip & Rumors: I Was 'most Hated Person In America'

GOSSIP & RUMORS: I was ‘most hated person in America’ after toxic workplace claims

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Ellen DeGeneres is opening up about the past toxic workplace claims made against her — in a new standup routine.

The former “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” host, 66, joked about “getting kicked out of show business” for being “mean” while performing at the Largo in LA on Wednesday.

In 2020, current and former staffers spoke anonymously about their alleged experience on set of the talk show for a BuzzFeed News report. She apologized to staff at the time and producers Ed Glavin, Kevin Leman and Jonathan Norman exited the show.

“As we’ve grown exponentially, I’ve not been able to stay on top of everything and relied on others to do their jobs as they knew I’d want them done. Clearly some didn’t,” she wrote at the time in a memo, per The Hollywood Reporter. “That will now change and I’m committed to ensuring this does not happen again.”

Ellen DeGeneres was confronted with toxic workplace claims in 2020. Wil Roberts / SplashNews.com

“On day one of our show, I told everyone in our first meeting that ‘The Ellen DeGeneres Show’ would be a place of happiness — no one would ever raise their voice, and everyone would be treated with respect,” she went on. “Obviously, something changed, and I am disappointed to learn that this has not been the case. And for that, I am sorry. Anyone who knows me knows it’s the opposite of what I believe and what I hoped for our show.”

DeGeneres ultimately announced in 2021 that Season 19 of the series would be the last and her final episode aired in May 2022.

“The hate went on for a long time and I would try to avoid looking at the news. The ‘be kind’ girl wasn’t kind. That was the headline,’ DeGeneres told the crowd this week, per Rolling Stone.

“There’s no mean people in show business.”

Noting her “be kind to one another,” talk show quote couldn’t save her, she joked it became a “problem” as viewers then thought of her as a “one-dimensional character who gave stuff away and danced up steps.”

DeGeneres announced in 2021 that Season 19 of the series would be the last and her final episode aired in May 2022. AP
“She was watching it happen to me… she went through it with me,” DeGeneres said of wife Portia de Rossi. Getty Images for Paramount Pictures

She said she “didn’t know how to be a boss” and “didn’t go to business school.”

“I went to Charlie’s Chuckle Hutt,” DeGeneres told the audience, referring to her comedy background. “The show was called Ellen and everybody was wearing T-shirts that said ‘Ellen’ and there were buildings on the Warner Brothers lot that said ‘Ellen,’ but I don’t know that that meant I should be in charge.”

“For those of you keeping score, this is the second time I’ve been kicked out of show business,” she went on to joke, referring to when she famously came out as gay on her sitcom “Ellen.”

Producer Andy Lassner and Ellen DeGeneres on set of “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.” The Ellen Show

“Eventually they’re going to kick me out for a third time because I’m mean, old, and gay.”

The comedian later did a Q&A with the audience and was asked if she still danced during rough times post-show.

“No… It’s hard to dance when you’re crying,” she said on Wednesday. “[I] had a hard time” and “didn’t get out” amid the scandal.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have become pals with Ellen DeGeneres since moving to Montecito, Calif. @Julesbytheseasb/Mega

The former Oscars host admitted to “laying low” in the aftermath and that the experience also affected wife Portia de Rossi.

“She was watching it happen to me… she went through it with me,” she explained. “[We’re] dancing now.”

DeGeneres concluded that the world needs “more laughter and less drama” and that she ultimately “hated the way the show ended.”

“I’m making jokes about what happened to me, but it was devastating. It took a long time for me to want to do anything again,” she said. “[I] loved that show so much.”

Ellen’s Last Stand … Up Tour will continue through July.



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